Christina Boike – Board President
Christina Boike is the current board president for the United Way of West Central Minnesota and joined our team after seeking out opportunities to give back to our local communities. An accountant with Christianson, PLLP for nearly 13 years, she is part of a family tradition of working in the field of accounting. All three of her younger siblings also share her love for numbers. Support from her parents encouraged her to find a career that was both rewarding and offered longevity, so she attended Southwest Minnesota State in Marshall with a double major in accounting and finance. Graduating in 2009 during the recession, she applied for a position in many places but was excited to come to Willmar to join the Christianson team. Being new to town, Christina was seeking to meet others and build relationships, and fulfill her personal value of community service and volunteerism. After learning about the work being done by the United Way through an employer campaign, our team was fortunate to have her join our internal committee where she served for approximately 10 years, before joining the board as member-at-large in 2019. Almost a full year into her new role as president, she is excited about the direction and opportunities to make an even larger impact to local individuals and families.
Christina was born on New Year’s Eve and grew up in Adrian, MN where there were only 36 people in her graduating class. Enjoying being active, she was involved in many efforts during her college education including being a resident adviser in her dorm, being part of various groups and organizations, work studies, internships, and others. That drive still serves her today. Ten years ago, she met her husband on a blind date, and they have since had four boys: Mason (7), Noah (5), Wyatt (3), and Griffin (1). When she isn’t out and about in the community, she loves spending time with her boys who have fully covered their kitchen in artwork. They inherited that from their mom who also loves artistic expression. She is an avid reader and has a guilty pleasure in the Hallmark Channel. She also has big goals and plans in the future as she nears her goal of travelling to all 50 states on a major road trip and jumping from an airplane, revealing her thrill-seeking streak. Last June, she accomplished another goal she had been chasing since high school and passed her CPA exam. She considers it her biggest career accomplishment. One of her favorite experiences was spending her 31st birthday with her husband in Times Square for the ball drop and her adventures are far from over.
Christina joined the board in November 2019 at a critical time for the United Way, just prior to the transition to Kevin Dietrich the executive director, shortly followed by the COVID pandemic. Christina is a long-serving member of the United Way team, and she has been passionate about her involvement since experiencing first-hand the incredible organizations and their mission to meet critical needs for all people. After participating in a “Community Review Day”, which was part of the grant process prior to COVID. Members of the community would meet and interact with many of the non-profit organizations in our service area and help to direct the funding to the areas needed most. As she learned how provided funds were being used in incredible ways and witnessing the difference it makes. COVID was a very challenging complication that forced drastic shifts in how our organization operates most effectively and making it more difficult to provide for needs with everyone being limited in interaction. We continue to adjust as needs and unforeseen challenges emerge just as we have since our founding. However, our grant process has changed to focus in even more on the areas of health, education, and basic needs on a quarterly basis. As we begin moving forward from COVID, we are again looking at how we can continue doing more and return to some of the pre-COVID activities and processes. Christina looks forward to coming out of this time stronger and better than ever before. New initiatives such as bringing The Village Children’s Museum under the programs of the United Way are thrilling developments. However, she loves the other aspects of the United Way also, especially in education through Imagination Library, preschool screening backpacks and the Growmobile. In fact, all four of her boys benefit from these programs to support their learning.
Christina’s vision for the United Way going forward it to place additional focus on strategic planning and addressing many of the challenges we face including COVID. This will help the United Way to build the momentum we had in the past. By digging deep and considering where we go from here, together we can all do incredible things. Another effect of our current events on the organization was a reduction in donations which she hopes will quickly return to and even exceed previous donation amounts as people return to a more normal life than we have experienced over the past two years. When everyone gives as they are able and in a way that is meaningful, there is no end to the good that can be done.
Christina is regarded by others as a caring, selfless, empathetic and a good listener. She has lots of love to give and gives freely of herself to the benefit of others. As she continues to help navigate our organization through the unknown, we are so grateful for all she does. Christina is the first to share all of the great things happening with the United Way and the incredible opportunity we have to step back and do even more. She is proud of the chapter she helped write during COVID and can’t wait to turn the page to a new one. Stronger partnerships with non-profit organizations, the sharing of resources and information, and the support and programs we provide are all efforts worth working for.
She is a firm believer that it does take a village, and that great relationships with those we serve, our donors, and the community are the catalyst to change lives in highly significant ways. With one more year in her term as president, she has no plans to leave anytime soon. We know that whatever role she has on the team will be a great benefit. When everyone gives just a little, we can do a whole lot to ensure we can all LIVE UNITED!